Saturday, May 28, 2011

The Meaning of Memorial Day

I have always know that Memorial Day is a day to remember those who died during an American war, but I did some checking and found out how it started…..


The day was originally know as “Decoration Day” because the day was dedicated to the Civil War dead, when mourners would decorate the gravesites.





The holiday was first widely observed May 30, 1868, when 5000 people helped decorate the gravesites of 20,000 Union and Confederate solders buried at Arlington National Cemetery. After World War 1, the observance was widened to honor the fallen from all American wars- and in 1971 Congress declared Memorial Day a national holiday.



Please try to remember the real meaning of this day when you are with your loved ones and take a moment this weekend to really be thankful to all those who have died for our way of life!


Images all courtesy of Google

Monday, May 2, 2011

Jessie Emilia Emma Reinhard

I would like to introduce you to a very special lady….Her name was “Aunt Jesse”, I only knew her as that as I was just a child….Aunt Jessie was my maternal grandmother’s sister.  There were three Reinhard sisters:

Mamie, Josie, Jessie Reinhard 1892   2

The baby in the middle is my grandmother Josephine ( born in 1891) , the child on the left is Mae Lillian “Mamie” and the oldest on the right is Jessie. 

The family story is that Jesse got Scarlet Fever as a child and her fever went too high and she came out of it mentally “different”.   She lived with her parents Charles and Amelia Reinhard her whole life, and when they both passed within 48 hours of each other she came to live at my grandparents house.  She never got past about 10 years of age….so to me a 8 or 9 year old she seemed perfectly normal!   She loved puzzles, she did hundreds of them and they were all in my grandparents attic. .  My grandmother was rough on her sometimes or so it seemed to me as a youngster,  and I would get cross at Grandma, I hated it when I thought she was being mean.  Now as an adult I understand what a sacrifice my grandparents made in taking her in, and how it was like having a forever child.

In the few photos I have of Jesse as a child, she has a somewhat different look on her face, but she was never excluded from anything! That was not the normal for mentally challenged children in the early 1900’s and I applaud my great grandparents for not putting her away, like so many children were that were afflicted mentally in some form or another in that time era.

L to R Jessie, Mamie, Josie Reinhard

Above photo, L to R, Jessie, Mamie and Josephine.

Reinhard Sisters and Friends

Josie Reinhard far right sitting down

This wonderful photo is at a Halloween Party, Jessie is the beautiful women in the white right in the middle, The woman sitting down on the far right is my grandmother.



BR Josie, Mamie, Amelia, Jessie FR Phyl, Bob, Chuck and Ione

Jessie is in the far right.


The photo that means the most to me is this one……

Grand Aunt Jesse Reinhard

This is how I remember my sweet Aunt Jessie….always with one of those very worn, very soft aprons on and that sweet smile…..

Jessie outlived both of my grandparents and ended up in a nursing home in Eau Claire, she lived to the ripe old age of 82.  Having very little of life’s stresses,  Jessie was able to outlive all of her family. I don’t know if that was a good thing or not, but it was how it happened.   As long as Jessie had her coloring books, crayons and puzzles her world was good…. I miss her a great deal some days…..